Sometimes, we learn how to love by the examples our mothers set. Tracee Dunblazier shares all her mother taught her about the power of loving big.
I think the biggest struggle to loving someone else is truly accepting them as they are when you find them—and that’s a gift my Mom had in abundance.
Mom and I had a great disparity of understanding for most of my life and even so, she challenged herself to try to understand me and not just educate me about how I should be.
My Mom was always practical; she bought only the things she needed, said what needed to be said—and always got things done that needed doing. She didn’t spend much time educating me on love and relationships and when I hit puberty, I got a little book written in the 50’s about sexual education and the physical body literally thrown at me.
One evening, she knocked on my door, opened it and tossed the book on my bed and said, “Let me know if you have any questions,” secretly hoping I wouldn’t.
Frankly, I was relieved that no conversation was required.
What I learned from my Mom, I got from watching her, day in and day out, making sacrifices and not complaining about it.
Crying by herself out of frustration because she didn’t understand me or what I needed. Saying yes to everything she could be available for, for all three of us girls—and doing it all by herself, after the loss of her husband of 20 years.
I also saw her laugh as loud as anybody in the room; stand with folded hands waiting to see how she could contribute—and help anyone who asked, even if she didn’t know how.
Even into adulthood, when anyone of us would come to her with a big problem, she stepped up to give us what she could. She wasn’t the most sensitive woman on the planet and didn’t always have the right thing to say…and well…sometimes she’d even say the wrong thing.
But, that’s what taught me to listen to what people say and hear what they do.
Now all grown up, I look back at all the unspoken advice I got from my Mom—and even though she’s not hear today to tell you herself, these are the four pieces of wisdom I am sure she’d want to impart.
1. “I don’t know why you’d want to do that … it doesn’t make any sense.”
People often don’t make sense, but loving them always does. If you spent half as much time challenging yourself to accept others, as you did spending precious energy trying to change them, there’d be a lot more time for love.
2. “Well, if you want to keep on feeling bad, then you should keep doing that.”
Don’t waste yourself or your time with someone you can’t be loving with. Love is a feeling, but it’s also a choice; yours. You can live a life of focusing on things and events or you can have experiences and moments—whatever you choose.
3. “You better watch out, you’ll put your eye out with that thing.”
“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.”
Do you remember that one? Well, it’s a complete farce and absolutely untrue. Think long and hard about what you say to the ones you love because words do hurt and they can fester hidden for a lifetime.
Words build tall mountains or dig deep holes, so I guess it depends where you want your relationships to end up.
4. “How many times have I told you? Don’t run with scissors.”
Everyone deserves to be loved—and sometimes, they need to be taught first. If this is the category you’re choosing, own it. You’ll be more empowered for it. Love as long and hard as you can up close, and when you can’t do that anymore, then love from afar; but always love.
Yes, my Mom was a doer—and, through her doing, she taught me to be patient, faithful and enduring in love…all with a wicked sense of humor, of course.
[image: via Pixabay]